By seeing a chiropractor during pregnancy, you lessen the chances of aches and pains turning into more permanent or long-lasting problems. For example, we will help you to understand how to engage your core muscles to maintain maximum strength in your body and avoid potential future problems such as incontinence in later life. Engaging your core goes much further than the ‘belly-button to back’ technique you may have learnt at exercise classes.
Undertaking a course of treatment to manage any problems could also contribute towards an intervention-free birth. Often, ladies who suffer from pelvic girdle dysfunction are more likely to end up needing assistance to have a natural birth so, if this is something that is important to you, please do come along and see us and we can work out the best treatment for you.
How can a chiropractor help me with pregnancy pain?
We treat any of the following:
- Pelvic pain
- Lower back pain
- Hip pain
- Rib pain (front and back)
- Back pain, mainly felt as sciatica
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Coccyx pain
As part of the natural process of preparing for birth, your body does several things.
Firstly, it secretes hormones (including relaxin) that serve to relax your muscles and ligaments to prepare your body for the birthing process.
Secondly, many of your bone structures, such as your rib cage physically move to create more space. This, in turn, alters your posture which, coupled with the inevitable weight gain, puts many parts of your body under pressure. It is this additional pressure which, especially for those who are predisposed, will cause sciatica during pregnancy.
Additionally, our ligaments hold our bones together so the effects of relaxin can also let joints move around and become painful. Your body also has to cope with an increased volume of blood during your pregnancy, which can lead to complaints such as carpal tunnel syndrome.
Sciatica during pregnancy
As chiropractors we provide lots of advice on how to fix sciatica pain while pregnant. However, there are some more serious conditions associated with pregnancy, such as pelvic girdle dysfunction and symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD), both of which can dramatically impacts your ability to remain mobile and pain free throughout your pregnancy.
Methods of treatment for sciatica during pregnancy may include:
- Small and safe adjustments
- Advice for minimising discomfort
- Dietary supplements
- Gentle exercises to maintain core strength
- Dry needling
- Soft tissue releases
- Pregnancy massage
- Identification of related injuries or inflammation
Interesting facts about pregnancy pain
|Pregnancy related lower back pain is common in 60-70% of pregnancies|
|It is classed as pain between 12th rib and the gluteal folds/pubic symphysis, to the knee and calf but not to the foot|
|Pregnancy pain is often referred to as pregnancy related pelvic girdle pain|
|Its prevalence is highest during the third trimester|
|Pain during pregnancy can be due to a combination of mechanical, hormonal, circulatory and psycho-social factors|
|Pain during pregnancy has several possible reasons: changes in facet joints, muscles or ligaments – primarily due to relaxin, which can affect the stability of the spine|
|It’s normal to gain 11-15kg during pregnancy, this increase in weight changes the force going through joints, it changes the centre of gravity of your body, forcing you into an anterior pelvic tilt|
|Hyperlordosis (due to the forward tilt of the pelvis) causes more stress on intervertebral discs, ligaments and facet joints, creating joint inflammation|
|Abdominal muscles are stretched and weakened with the added weight gain this can compress the lumbosacral plexus resulting in nerve pain|
|Associated factors for pain during pregnancy are laborious work, history of lower back pain, inactivity or sedentary lifestyle|
|Pregnancy related lower back pain can occur with thoracic/rib pain, hip pain and diastasis recti and discogenic pain, facet joint sprain and sacroiliac joint sprain/strain|